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About

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OUR STORY

"A Good Coach Will Impact More People In One Year Than The Average Person Will In A Lifetime." - Billy Graham

A Letter From BMF Founder -

 

"When I first met Coach Jamal Powell I had no idea the journey that would be started and the impact he would end up having on my life. My relationship with Jamal started in 2015 when he was hired to be my offensive line coach at James Madison University prior to my senior season. Jamal would later become my coaching mentor. From the moment I met Coach Powell I knew that he was different than most coaches I had ever had before. He placed a premium on building trusting, meaningful relationships with his players. By doing so he could not only push his student-athletes to be great football players, but he could challenge his student-athletes to be great in every realm of their lives: academically, socially and spiritually. I can testify to this because I am one of these student-athletes that he made this impact on. 

Going into my senior season and knowing that my football career was soon coming to an end, I found myself at a crossroads trying to decide what would come next. I began routinely meeting with him about the idea of becoming a college football coach. I was inspired to have a meaningful impact on young people that same way Coach Powell had impacted me. Coach Powell encouraged me to do so, and offered me an opportunity to learn under him at the conclusion of my playing career. I took him up on his offer and in the spring of 2016 I immediately fell in love with the profession and with my job working with my new mentor, Coach Powell. I had no clue how very fast and how very full the next few years would be. Coach Powell and I would spend almost every minute of almost everyday together. Our relationship never felt like superior-subordinate, but instead we functioned as a true team whose strengths and weaknesses complimented each other. In 2017 I would leave behind my home of Central Virginia and everything I knew to pursue another opportunity to learn under Coach Powell at Lamar University in Beaumont, Texas. 

At this point our relationship would reach new heights. The Powell Family showed me love that no body outside of my immediate family had ever shown me before. They would take me into their home when I didn't have a place to live. They would feed me when I didn't have enough money to eat.  They would include me on holidays with their family when I couldn't be with my own. Also during this time I witnessed Coach Powell take huge risks and make numerous bets on himself to pursue (and earn) one of his milestone career goals - to become an Offensive Line Coach at an FBS Division 1 school in his home state of Texas. In 2018 I would again follow Coach Powell to Southern Methodist University. No one expected what would happen next.

Shortly after arriving at SMU, Jamal became ill with a rare auto-immune disease called Guillain-Barre syndrome (GBS). He lost a tremendous amount of weight, lost feeling and fine motor function his arms and legs and was confined to a wheelchair. He was sidelined from coaching while checking in and out of the hospital as his medical complications compounded. Months later he would be diagnosed with colon cancer, leading to his colon being removed, only to have the cancer return again in Summer 2020. 

My mentor's life was changed. In an instant the lives of his wife and their three young children were flipped upside down. But what is most inspiring about Coach Powell is his steadfast optimism and his determination to continue to fight. I look up to him now more than ever. No matter how grim it has gotten, Coach Powell has managed to see the good in every situation. He continues to use his platform to inspire others. 

 

Coach Powell made such a profound impact on my life that it's hard for me to put into words. His influence molded me as an athlete, as a professional, and as a young man. Coach Powell has always demanded fearless optimism, an indomitable spirit, and the courage to pursue excellence. He encourages these qualities because these qualities make up who Coach Powell is. With a tremendous amount of help from an ensemble of talented & selfless people we created an organization that embodies Coach Powell's best qualities.

I can say with confidence that Coach Powell changed my world. And now we have the opportunity to help change his and the world's of other world changers." 

-Casey Kroll

Founder and President